The NHL is in a Lockout
Preseason games have been cancelled through September 30th and workers have been forced to take pay cuts. The lack of progress in labor talks between the NHLPA and NHL is a concern not only for the fans but for the players as well. A handful of players have already signed to play in leagues overseas this year. Jason Spezza of the Ottawa Senators just recently signed up to play for Rapperswil-Jona of the Swiss Elite League. Joining Spezza in Switzerland are fellow NHL forwards Rick Nash, Logan Couture and Joe Thorton. The Kings' Anze Kopitar signed with Mora IK of the Swedish league's second division. Alex Ovechkin signed to play with his former team in Russia; Dynamo Moscow. I'm expecting more players to sign elsewhere in the coming weeks.
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and NHLPA Executive Director Donald Fehr are at an impasse right now as the two sides refuse to budge.
You may be asking yourself; have they made any progress at all? The answer is yes, but very little.
From a historical perspective we may miss out on some records being broken if no games are played.
Jaromir Jagr is 4 goals away from passing Luc Robitaille for 10th on the all time goals scored list. Jagr currently has 665 career goals. He would become the first non Canadian to make the top 10. Teemu Selanne is 2 goals behind Jagr with 663 career goals. A lockout may end the career of Martin Broduer who has a chance to add more shutout victories to his career 119, which ranks first all time. His 656 wins ranks first all time as well; 105 more than Patrick Roy who is 2nd on the list.
This is the 4th lockout in the last 20 years for the NHL... Even if they start the season on time, I'm guessing a lot of fans will voice their displeasure by not going to games. This may be what the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) needs to jump into the sports mainstream. Now if only I could watch two guys beat the crap out of each other for a few hours at a time... Oh wait, I can.
September 19th, 2012